Sagarmatha National Park
Area: 1148 km2.
Buffer Zone: 275 km2
Sagarmatha National Park in the Khumbu region of Nepal comprises massive rocky landscapes, ravines, high mountain glaciers, and deep valleys from the Himalayas. Mount Sagarmatha is the iconic and pinnacle of Sagarmatha National Park. Mount Sagarmatha is the highest peak in the world (8,848 m), as are Lhotse (8,501 m), Cho Oyu (8,153 m), and Nuptse (7,896 m). Other peaks above 6,000m are Lhotse, Cho Oyu, and Thamserku. Amadablam and Pumori are towering presences in Sagarmatha National Park. The park is also the upper catchment area of the Dudhkoshi and Bhotehoshi Rivers. For its exceptional natural importance, UNESCO listed SNP as a World Heritage Site of Natural Importance in 1979. Gokyo and the associated lakes are listed as Ramsar sites.
Indigenous Sherpas and Sagarmathas are synonymous with each other. Famed mountaineers who live in the region. The renowned Tengboche and other monasteries are common gathering places to celebrate religious festivals and daily life. In addition to Tengboche, Thame, Khumjung, and Pangboche are some other famous monasteries where Buddhism is practised.
With most of the park above 3,000 metres, the park features rugged terrain, deep gorges, glaciers, and massive rocks. The forest in Sagarmatha National Park is mainly composed of silver fir, birch, rhododendron, and juniper trees. Whereas scrub and alpine plant communities are common at higher altitudes. In comparison to other parts of Nepal, the park has a comparatively low number of mammals. The flora and fauna are diverse, with dense forests of pine, oak, and flowering rhododendrons found up to 4,000 m above sea level. In Sagarmatha National Park, there are more than 118 species of birds, including the Impeyan, Nepal's national bird. Along with snow leopards and red pandas, musk deer, Himalayan tahr, Ghoral, Himalayan pika, and Himalayan black bears are wildlife spotted frequently by travellers.
Sagarmatha National Park: Living in the high Himalayas: Sherpa Culture and Mountains
Sagarmatha is an exceptional area in the Mahalangur mountain range with dramatic mountains, glaciers, and deep valleys, and the highest peak in the world (8,848.86 m) locally known by the Tibetan name, Chomolungma “Goddess Mother of the World” “Goddess of the Valley.” In Sanskrit Sagarmatha’s “Peak of Heaven” and Mount Everest in English. Besides Sagarmatha Park consists of Seven other peaks over 7,000 m with most of the park above 3,000 m in rugged terrain, deep gorges, glaciers, and massive rocks. The forest in Sagarmatha national park is mainly of silver fir, birch, rhododendron, and juniper trees. Whereas scrub and alpine plant communities are common at higher altitudes. In comparison to other parts of Nepal, the Park has a comparatively low number of mammals. The flora and fauna are diverse with dense forests of pine, oak, and flowering rhododendrons found up to 4,000 m above sea level. In Sagarmatha national park more than 118 species of birds including Impeyan, Nepal's national bird. Along with Snow Leopard and Red Panda, Musk deer, Himalayan Tahr, Ghoral, Himalayan Pika, and Himalayan, black bears are wildlife spotted frequently in the Sagarmatha region.
Besides mountain peaks, glaciers, rocks, flora, and fauna, the exclusive animal Sagarmatha Khumbu region is home to the indigenous Sherpa community. Indigenous Sherpa and Sagarmatha are synonymous with each other. Famed mountaineers who live in the region. The renowned Tengboche and other monasteries are common gathering places to celebrate religious festivals and daily life. In addition to Tengboche, Thame, Khumjung, and Pangboche are some other famous monasteries where Buddhism is practiced. Conservation-oriented Sherpa culture is the backbone for the conservation of biodiversity in the Khumbu region. Sherpas have inhabited the region for the last four centuries. Continuing their traditional practice of culture and religion including the restriction of animal hunting and slaughtering, and reverence of all living beings. These practices combined with indigenous natural resource management practices have been major contributing factors to the successful conservation of the Sagarmatha National Park.
The Department of the national park manages the buffer zone (BZ) program to enhance the protection and management of the park to enhance conservation and improve the socio-economic status of the local communities through a revenue-back system. The area represents a major stage of the Earth’s evolutionary history and is one of the most geologically interesting regions in the world with high, geologically young mountains and glaciers creating awe-inspiring landscapes and scenery dominated by the high peaks and corresponding deeply-incised valleys. This park contains the world’s highest ecologically characteristic flora and fauna, intricately blended with the rich Sherpa culture. The intricate linkages of the Sherpa culture with the ecosystem are a major highlight of the park and they form the basis for the sustainable protection and management of the park for the benefit of the local communities.
With the world’s highest peak, the presence of the Sherpas will inspire each traveler, and researcher to learn life practices that are in harmony with human life and nature.
Day 1: Arrival in Kathmandu, assistance with luggage, and transfer to hotel
The first day is your arrival. We will be there to pick you up from the airport and guide you to your routine from here on out. This day will be spent checking into your hotel room and ensuring you have everything you need to start your journey. The remaining part of your time will be spent exploring Kathmandu city or just relaxing in your hotel room after a long flight.
Day 2: preparation for trekking and Kathmandu sightseeing
The major focus of this day is to give briefings and introductions to the clients about the whole trek. Once the briefing is done, there will be free time to do last-minute shopping for things that are essential during the trek then the rest of the day will be spent sightseeing around Kathmandu city.
If there is no flight from Kathmandu to Lukla, you will travel from Ramechhap and take a 5-hour trip to the Ramechhap airport's Manthali airport.
Day 3: Fly to Lukla (2800 m) and trek to Phakdhing (2610 m). -3 hrs
We will begin as early as possible on the third day to catch a flight to Lukla from Kathmandu. You can get an extreme adventure experience with the Lukla flight, as it is considered one of the most adventurous airports in the world. We will touch the Khumbu region and the flight itself will be filled with beautiful scenery you will even be able to catch a glimpse of Mt. Everest in the distance if it is a clear day. Once we arrive at Lukla, after having breakfast we will begin our trekking to Phakding. The walk from Lukla to Phakding takes about 3-4 hours where along the way you can see the Sherpa culture and Buddhism ingrained in every part of the journey. Our adventurous day will come to an end once we reach Phakding.
Day 4: Trek from Phakding to Namche Bazaar (3420 m). – 5-6 hrs
The next day, after early breakfast we will continue on our fourth day of EBC trekking. And today we will be trekking from Phakding to Namche Bazaar. This will be a walk along the banks of the Dudh Koshi River. This will be our official entry to the Sagarmatha National Park. We will cross the famous Hillary Bridge which is adorned with Buddhist prayer flags. Hiking mostly uphill, sometimes leaving the way for mules and yaks carrying the loads to pass through and interacting with the locals. We will make a stop at Jorsale to have a well-needed lunch and spend about an hour taking a rest before continuing our journey. Before arriving at Namche Bazaar, we will stop at Top Dada, where you will be able to get a first glimpse of Mt. Everest. Then once again rising uphill after about roughly one hour we will arrive at Namche Bazaar. Namche Bazaar is one of the famous cities of Nepal, surrounded by many high peaks. It is located on a slope of an arch-shaped mountain and has historical significance as it is the trading center of the Khumbu region. After checking in at the hotel and having some tea and freshening up, we will explore the city of Namche. There are many local foods you can try or even indulge yourself in some music and dancing at the infamous Irish Pub.
Day 5: Acclimatization in Namche Bazaar
This day is for you to enjoy the scenery, culture, environment, and religion of the Namche Bazaar along with the mighty mountains that surround you. You are essentially making your body used to the altitude so that you will minimize the chance of altitude sickness further in your journey as a part of the acclimatization process, we will practice the climb high and sleep low method. After our breakfast at the hotel, we will do a short hike to Everest View Hotel (3,962m) where you can get a panoramic view of the mountains including Mt. Everest, Mt. Lhotse, and so on. After spending some time in Everest View Point, we will hike back down to Namche Bazaar to have lunch. The rest of the day will be spent relaxing and enjoying leisure time while exploring the culture and nature around you or doing last-minute shopping.
Day 6: Trek from Namche to Tengboche (3870 m). - 4 hrs
As the new day begins we will leave Namche Bazaar and trek to our next destination Tengboche. The trail will be filled with beautiful scenery of the mighty peaks of the Khumbu region such as; Everest, Lhotse, Nuptse, and Ama Dablam. The trail follows the Dudh Koshi River and will be an up-and-downhill trek. Finally, when we arrive at our destination for the day, we can take a rest for a while and explore the Tengboche area which is famous for Tengboche Monastery. If we are lucky, we might be able to see the Buddhist ceremony as well.
Day 7: Trek from Tengboche to Dingboche (4360 m). 3-4 hrs.
On the seventh day will continue our trek to Dingboche. Today is a comparatively short hike compared to our previous days and merciful landscape. But we will make our trek slow and steady as there is a significant pick-up in altitude. For our lunch, we will stop at the village of Pangboche (3,985m), which is the home of Pangboche Monastery and holds the famous fragmentary mummified hand and skull that is believed to have come from a Yeti. We will roam around the Monastery and get blessings from the Lama if possible. After our lunch, we will continue our trek to Dingboche and you will notice the significant changes in the tree line, where the height of the trees will be significantly shorter. After reaching Dingboche and checking in at the lodge, you will be given free time to do as you, please. You can either explore around or just sit in the warm comfort of the dining hall reading a good book or just making conversations with people around you until it is dinner time.
Day 8: Acclimatization Day in Dingboche
Rest day—acclimatization in Dingboche, where we can take a walk. For example, an exciting and easy itinerary leads to the village of Nangkartshang Gonda through a ridge topped with a stupa. From here, you can enjoy a phenomenal view of Tawotse and Ama Dablam. It is all part of the acclimatization as we will ascend even higher in the coming days.
Day 9: Trek from Dingboche to Lobuche (4930 m)
After spending a night at Dingboche, we will again continue our journey and this time our destination for the day is Lobuche. The highlights of this walk will be seen as we ascend to our destination which is full of beautiful scenery on the way from Dingboche to Dughla (Thokla) with snow peaks, glaciers, and a river. You will see a breathtaking view from the top of Thokla passing to Lobuche. Once you reach Lobuche, you will get settled in your hotel room and take much-needed rest and explore a little once you catch up on some rest and get some food.
Day 10: Trek from Lobuche to Base Camp to Gorakshep (5160 m). -2 hrs
On this day we will relatively begin our trek a little earlier so we can reach our destination before or around midday to avoid arriving after it gets dark. Gorakshep will mark as the last village before our stop at Everest Base Camp. This day once you have arrived and settled into your hotel, you can take the rest of the day to explore Gorakshep.
Day 11: Trek from Gorakshep to Kalapathar to Pheriche (4240 m) (6 hours return)
The walk from Gorakshep to Kala Patthar is not that long so depending on what season, you can go watch the sunrise from Kalapathar as many tourists like to do and it is one of the most beautiful views you can see. And once you come back from Kalapathar to Gorakshep where you will eat breakfast, get some rest and pack your belongings and start your walk back to Pheriche. And since it is downhill, it will take less time than before to cover the distance from Gorakshep to Lobuche to Dhugla to finally Pheriche.
Day 12: Trek from Pheriche to Tengboche
From Pheriche, we will make our way back to Tengboche. We will stop for lunch at Pangboche as we did before and retrace our steps back to Tengboche where we will stay for the night before continuing our journey the next day. As we will reach early there.
Day 13: Trek from Tengboche to Namche
Early morning after breakfast we will start our journey back to Namche Bazaar. As you have already walked this route, making your way back will be much easier and faster. Once arriving at Namche Bazaar, we will have lunch then you are free to roam around Namche Bazaar, and visit places we missed before. There are many souvenir shops you can visit and buy a piece of memory for yourself or your loved ones. Trying local cuisine or getting a much-needed massage in the spa as your body will probably be exhausted from days of walking could be another activity.
Day 14: Trek from Namche Bazaar to Lukla. – 5/6 hrs
Early rising and early breakfast will have our journey will start back to Lukla. Following the Dudh Koshi River, we will reach Phakding for our lunch, then it is uphill till we reach Lukla.
Day 15: Fly back to KTM from Lukla.
Waking up early in the morning to have early breakfast as we will be taking a flight back from Lukla to Kathmandu. Once you arrive in Kathmandu, you will be taken to your hotel for much-needed rest and refreshments. Soon after you will have lunch and have the remainder of the day off for rest.
Day 16: Explore KTM Valley.
Free day in Kathmandu Valey with farewell dinner.
Day 17: Departure.
We will transport you to the airport and bid you farewell. Your journey with us has come to an end for now but hopefully, we will get to assist you again in the future.
“End of Tour”